Banja Luka & Surroundings

Banja Luka Bosnia and Herzegovina

Welcome to Banja Luka, a city of fascinating heritage that also holds a wealth of captivating experiences waiting to be explored.

Tucked amidst lush hills, this vibrant destination offers a delightful fusion of culture, culinary delights, nightlife and diverse accommodation options. The serene presence of the Vrbas River meandering through the city adds a sense of tranquility, while its proximity to thrilling rafting adventures makes it a sought-after destination for adventure enthusiasts. As the sun sets, Banja Luka comes alive with a vibrant nightlife that will ignite your senses.

Immerse yourself in the pulsating beats of its clubs or the more folky Kozara Ethno Festival. The city’s abundant green parks provide a serene retreat, offering a welcome respite from the urban hustle and allowing you to reconnect with nature. Uncover the historical allure of Kastel Fortress, marvel at the mesmerizing beauty of Krupa Waterfalls, or embark on a unique adventure aboard a Dajak boat, gliding through tranquil waters while admiring the picturesque landscapes.

The thermomineral springs blend with the cool currents of the Vrbas River, offering a unique and revitalizing experience at Vrucica Beach, located at the entrance to Banja Luka. These natural hot springs maintain their warmth throughout the year, making them a beloved destination for the locals of Banja Luka. Indulge in the therapeutic benefits of the hot springs as you unwind and relax in this idyllic setting. For an additional dose of adventure and multiple days of bolting, climbing, highlining, and outdoor fun, partake in the Drill & Chill festival, one of Europe’s most praised climbing and highlining events that takes place on fascinating Tijesno Canyon, near Banja Luka. Rock climbing enthusiasts should ensure they don’t miss out on the numerous new climbing routes developed in this area. Be sure to get your copy of the 2024 edition of the Rock Climbing Guide for Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Banja Luka invites you to immerse yourself in its vibrant culture and embrace the genuine warmth of its people. With its charming blend of natural splendor, pulsating nightlife, and a youthful ambiance, this city promises an unforgettable journey filled with delightful surprises at every turn. Prepare to create cherished memories as you explore the hidden gems of Banja Luka and its captivating surroundings.


Mrkonjić Grad

Mrkonjić Grad, located in the southern part of the Northwest Krajina region, offers a unique experience for nature enthusiasts. While the town itself may not be the main attraction, the surrounding natural beauty is truly remarkable. For those who love outdoor activities like mushroom foraging, fly-fishing, biking, and climbing, the village Pecka and its Pecka Outdoor Center are a must-visit destination. Situated between Šipovo and Mrkonjić Grad, this village embodies traditional rural life and immerses you in nature. Pecka Village was recently recognized as one of the Most Beautiful Villages of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is surrounded by the pristine Pliva and Sana Rivers, renowned for their purity and splendor. Sana River source is the natural monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Further north, the Eco Zone Zelenkovac offers a peaceful retreat deep within the forest, where you can experience tranquility and enjoy the annual cool jazz festival. While in Mrkonjić Grad, enjoy the charms of nature in mesmerizing Balkana Lake and indulge in authentic Varcar craft beer. Also, witness the Memorial Museum of the first session of ZAVNOBiH, commemorating one of the most important events in the country’s history.


Šipovo, located between the picturesque valleys of western Bosnia and the neighboring towns of Jajce and Mrkonjić Grad, offers a serene and idyllic retreat. The town is renowned for its small-scale agriculture, benefiting from fertile soil and abundant freshwater sources that create an ideal environment for farming. The surrounding countryside is adorned with charming villages, glistening lakes, and rolling hills, all framed by the majestic peaks of Vitorog Mountain to the west. Nature lovers will be captivated by the pristine sources of the Pliva and Janj Rivers, which provide excellent opportunities for fly-fishing and a peaceful atmosphere. In the Janj Islet area, which is a haven for those seeking solace within the untouched beauty of nature, visitors can also find cozy, and authentic bed and breakfast accommodations. Additionally, nature sites such as Vagan Cave and UNESCO-recognized primeval forest Janj are guaranteed to leave deep imprints and create long-lasting memories.


Ribnik exudes tranquility and showcases the beauty of nature. This enchanting small town is celebrated for its idyllic surroundings, featuring abundant green meadows, undulating hills, and unspoiled forests. Ribnik is well-suited for fishing activities. Additionally, Ribnik boasts numerous caves, including the grand Ledana Cave, the largest among them. The river Ribnik, flowing through the town of the same name, hosts most of the fishing competitions in Republika Srpska. With its serene ambiance and picturesque landscapes, Ribnik is the perfect destination for those in search of a peaceful retreat embraced by nature's splendor.


Located about 17 kilometers southeast of Banja Luka, Čelinac is a municipality where numerous archaeological remains are found. The territory of today’s municipality has been favorable for human life since ancient times, where remains of several Illyrian sites and walls stand to this day. Besides containing rich cultural and historical heritage, the municipality’s pleasant climate and natural resources heavily contribute to its overall attractiveness. In Čelinac, peaceful wine and traditional brandy tasting sessions in the countryside are quite sought after, alongside visits to Stuplje Monastery, one of the most iconic monuments in the region. The surroundings of Čelinac are known for their natural beauty, picnic areas, and opportunities for nature retreats. Activities such as hiking through captivating landscapes and fishing on the invigorating Vrbanja River will provide you with memorable experiences.

Find accommodation in Banja Luka

Things to do in Banja Luka